North Carolina church halts weddings

March 19, 2013 at 9:48 AM

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., March 19 (UPI) -- A North Carolina church has refused to hold wedding ceremonies and sign marriage licenses until gay couples in the state are permitted to marry.

The Green Street United Methodist Church of Winston-Salem placed a public statement on its website recently saying the ban will continue until the Methodist Church also permits same-sex marriage.

"As an anti-racist, Reconciling Congregation, Green Street United Methodist Church seeks to be in faithful ministry with all people in the brokenness of our world," the statement said.

The church went on to say that "committed same-sex relationships are no less sacred" than heterosexual relationships.

Church pastor the Rev. Kelly P. Carpenter wrote Sunday he does not approve of church policies that exclude and will be "active in working to change them."

"Our United Methodist denomination has failed to lead the way in this struggle for equality, and will once again have to catch up to the culture," Rev. Kelly said.

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